Obituary for Florence Gertrude Wakefield
Florence passed away after a short illness at St. Boniface Hospital Palliative Care Unit. She was predeceased by her parents, Alice and Frederick Venn and her husband Roy. She is survived and deeply loved by her children Bob (Marni), Barbara (Randy) and Ian (June), grandchildren Mike (Christa) and Monica (Dave), and great-grandsons Rocky, Layton, Tyson and Grayson.
Florence, an only child, was born in Portage la Prairie. Life was hard, helping her parents run a farm during the Depression. These challenges were never forgotten and allowed her to be grateful for all life’s gifts, no matter how small. Friendships that included Evelyn, Hattie, Bessie, Lillian, Dorothy, Doreen and Robina were established during this time and extended the full length of her life, the longest over 90 years. The next chapter of her life involved business college in Winnipeg which lead to her employment with Richardson & Sons. Here she met her future husband Roy and established a life-long friendship with her colleague Joan. After marriage she happily assumed the role of mother and homemaker. The neighbourhood was lively and close-knit. Neighbours remained life-long friends.
As circumstances demanded, she returned to the workforce in 1970 acting as classified advertising supervisor at the Winnipeg Tribune. The sudden closing of the paper forced a move to the Winnipeg Sun where she became advertising manager until her retirement in 1988. All her employment history included friendships that lasted her lifetime. Retirement afforded her time to travel to Oregon, California, Arizona, Florida, Newfoundland, Alaska and the United Kingdom.
Throughout her life, Florence maintained a deep and committed relationship with Harrow United Church. As one of it’s longest serving members, she was involved with U.C.W., church visitation, baking for bazaars, and countless other roles. She was a dedicated volunteer at Agape Table, and Oak Table for many years. She tirelessly knit hundreds of afghans for donation to the Stroke Club of Manitoba. She was a prolific and accomplished knitter, earning many prizes for her work. Until a few months ago, she bowled weekly in a league at Mosienko Lanes where many friendships developed over the years. She still attended a Bomber game or two.
Florence was truly committed to the greater good, whether it be related to family and friends, colleagues or the community at large. She never faltered in her dedicated caregiving to her friend Joan. She always displayed positivity, a sense of fun and adventure, a propensity to bet on “the gray horse” and a willingness to embrace life and all it’s challenges. She had a keen interest in politics at all levels of government, working at many elections over the decades. Social justice was very important to her, always aiming to see the better side of people. We think the world would be a better place with more Florences in it.
Our family would like to thank Rev. Teresa Moysey, palliative care nurses Monique and Lisa, and coordinator Erin for their invaluable care.
A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, March 3, 2018 at 1:00 p.m. at Harrow United Church, 955 Mulvey Ave.
If friends desire, donations in memory of Florence may be made to L.I.T.E., 203-765 Main St. Winnipeg, R2W 3N5, Winnipeg Humane Society, 45 Hurst Way, Winnipeg, R3T 0R3 or Harrow United Church, 955 Mulvey Ave. Winnipeg, R3M 1G8